Imo State Governor, Hope Uzodimma, has justified the Nigerian military operation against Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) in some parts of Orlu.
Uzodinma vowed that his administration would not yield to pressure from those calling for withdrawal of soldiers.
The governor said he invited soldiers in Orlu to restore calm in the area after members of the Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB) killed policemen and citizens.
Uzodimma, who spoke through the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Cyprain Akaolisa, at a press briefing in Owerri, said the narrative that innocent people were being killed by the military was false.
He said the government discovered that there were deliberate attempts by IPOB to attack Orlu people and the government in the guise that they were looking for Fulani herdsmen.
Uzodinma said the attacks on police stations and killing of security personnel during the End SARS riots were carried out by IPOB for the sole purpose of stealing weapons.
“They are now using those arms to destroy Orlu. They killed 10 policemen, a prominent Orlu son, Ignatius Obiezu and one Emmanuel Okeke (Soludo) collected their Hilux vehicles
“The IPOB also shot and killed four Moslems doing their business in Orlu. IPOB said they were looking for herdsmen, but these victims they killed before the crisis, were they herdsmen?
“We heard Nnamdi Kanu celebrating the activities of his men in Orlu; that they are doing well by killing innocent citizens. There’s no Fulani herdsmen in Orlu. What is the colouration IPOB is trying to give this onslaught?
“That’s why our government decided to invite military to flush out IPOB and their so called ESN. We discovered that there was a camp which IPOB established at Umutanze, Orlu and we sent police to dislodge them.”
The governor said IPOB attacked the policemen and killed two of them.
He recalled that after the military succeeded in dislodging them, the members went on a reprisal and murdered people.
Uzodinma said they relocated to Udah in Orsu LGA, a camp at a boundary between Imo and Anambra States.
He disclosed that the place was under surveillance for two weeks and it was discovered more than 200 fighters were being trained.
The Imo government said the military had to deploy their arsenal to diminish IPOB members people there.
Uzodinma stated that his administration would watch and allow the killing of citizens everyday.